When freshly cut the heartwood of purpleheart can be a  dull grayish/purplish brown. Upon exposure, usually within a few days, the wood becomes a deeper eggplant purple. With further age and exposure to UV light, the wood becomes a dark brown with a hint of purple. This color-shift can be slowed and minimized by using a UV inhibiting finish on the wood. The grain is usually straight, but can also be wavy or irregular, and has a medium texture with good natural luster.

Janka Hardness:

2,520 lbf 

Average Dried Weight:

56.4 lbs/ft3 (905 kg/m3)


Working with purpleheart can present some unique challenges. If the wood is heated with dull tools, or if cutter speeds are too high, purpleheart will exude a gummy resin that can clog tools and complicate the machining process. Depending on the grain orientation, it can be difficult to plane Purpleheart without tearout. Purpleheart also has a moderate dulling effect on cutters.